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Jumia Kenya Appoints Charles Ballard as its third CEO in 16 months

Yesterday, Jumia Kenya confirmed the appointment of Charles Ballard as the new CEO. His appointment took effect last month, making him the company’s third chief executive from November 2021.

Charles Ballard joined the Kenyan company in 2019 as the Head of Performance and Planning after serving as the deputy chief financial officer of the international humanitarian NGO ACTED before then. His commitment to Jumia Kenya got him promoted to Chief Operating Officer in 2021, tasked with the duties of developing and implementing the company’s operations in Kenya. He was appointed the Senior Vice President – Commercials in 2022.

“I am excited to continue driving the e-commerce narrative in rural Kenya, where more than 70% of the population lives. Access to Modern Retail is a challenge in these areas, which is a great opportunity to grow our online marketplace. E-commerce can bring better prices, more choices, and convenience to the rural Kenyans,” he said of his appointment.

Jumia Kenya appoints a new CEO, after its two immediate predecessors each served for less than a year.
Jumia Kenya appoints a new CEO, after its two immediate predecessors each served for less than a year
Jumia Kenya’s CEOs since November 2021

After the departure of Sam Chappette, Betty Mwangi was appointed as the CEO of Jumia Kenya in November 2021. The company made giant strides in the Kenyan space, particularly regarding partnerships before departing the role only eight months after her appointment.

Juan Seco, who preceded Charles Ballard, joined the company in 2015, where he served as the Chief Financial Officer. He became part of the founding team for JumiaPay in 2017 as the Chief Operating Officer and was named the Senior Vice President of Consumer Financial Services in 2019. He was appointed as the CEO in July 2022.

The reason he departed from Jumia is unknown, but a look at his LinkedIn profile shows that Juan Seco is now the Chief Growth Officer and MD East Africa for Mukuru, a Fintech business that gives emerging consumer access to affordable and reliable financial services.

About Jumia

Former McKinsey consultants; Jeremy Hodara and Sacha Poignonnec, Tunde Kehinde, and Raphael Kofi Afaedor created Jumia in 2012.

The known e-commerce company was introduced in Nigeria before being launched in five other nations: Egypt, Morocco, Ivory Coast, Kenya, and South Africa. By 2018, the corporation had offices in 14 African nations, including Tunisia, Tanzania, Ghana, Cameroon, Algeria, and Uganda. Interestingly, it has been attempting to establish itself as one of the top e-commerce sites in Egypt.

Africa's unicorn, Jumia records Q4 narrowed losses amidst cost-saving strategy

Jumia comprises a marketplace that brings together sellers and buyers, a logistics service that makes it possible for packages to be shipped and delivered from sellers to buyers, and a payment service that makes it possible for participants to conduct transactions with one another in certain markets.

It has partnered with over 100,000 active sellers and individuals and is a direct competitor to Konga in Nigeria and Amazon in Egypt.

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